John’s 15 Best Films of 2013

I had meant to post this over a week ago, but completely forgot about it.  Anyway here is my list of the 15 best films of 2013

Honorable Mentions: The Wolf of Wall Street, Rush, Thor: The Dark World, The Grandmaster, Ender’s Game, Fast & Furious 6, Iron Man 3, and Oblivion.

15. Gravity

I think Gravity is probably the most overrated film I’ve seen this year. Yes Gravity was a visually amazing film that basically single handily gives the film 3 stars as well as being the best 3D film I’ve seen, but the story wasn’t the best, and then there is Sandra Bullock. Sandra Bullock is a decent actress, and does a solid job, but certainly doesn’t deserve the praise she has gotten for her performance in Gravity. Her performance reminds me of her performance in The Blind Side in which she won a Oscar. Sure she gave a solid performance in the film, but Bullock didn’t deserve to be nominated or win an Oscar, and she doesn’t here with Gravity.

14. Prisoners

If it weren’t for the final act of the film Prisoners would be close to being in my top 5 films of the year. Prisoners a top notch suspense thriller about two daughters being abducted, and their fathers going to extremes to find them is very well written, and acted by Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal.

13. Europa Report

Europa Report is perhaps the most underrated and overlooked film of 2013. I haven’t liked a found footage film yet with Europa Report being the lone exception. The film perfectly blends the Found footage, sci-fi, and documentary genres nearly perfectly creating one of the most realistic sci-fi films in a very long time. The film was also well acted by the basically unknown cast with Sharlto Copley being the exception. I know the overrated Gravity has over shadowed the film, but Europa Report is the superior film, and shouldn’t be over looked.

12. The Wolverine

This was the Wolverine I had hoped for with the extremely disappointing X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Director James Mangold does a superb job bringing to life one of Wolverine’s best storyline based on Chris Claremont, Frank Miller’s acclaimed limited Wolverine comic series. The Wolverine is one of the best Marvel comic films I’ve seen.

11. American Hustle

You can see my review for more, but American Hustle is a really good film with a faltering script, great characters, special performances by Christian Bale, Amy Adams, and Jennifer Lawrence making it one of the films of 2013 that shouldn’t be missed.

10. Star Trek Into Darkness

When I first saw Into Darkness the first few times after it first come out early May I absolutely loved the film giving the film a 4.5 bording on a 5 star rating, but after picking up the Blu-Ray my opinion of the film has faltered down where I’ve thought about giving it just 4 Stars. The reason mainly having to do with the script which wasn’t well done. Into the Darkness is still a really good film, just not as good as I originally thought it was.

9. The Way, Way Back

This drama/comedy/coming of age film gives us Steve Carell best performance of his short film career as the emotionally abusive Trent. I have like Carell since his days on The Daily Show, and hopefully he’ll chose more roles like this as he as shown he can be a dramatic actor.

8. This is the End

I was a late comer to this film skipping it in the theater, but after seeing it This is the End it is the best comedy I’ve seen in years, and I think maybe in a decade. James Franco, Jonah Hill, Seth Rogen, and Craig Robinson were hilarious playing a version of themselves making This is the End a film that shouldn’t be missed.

7. Inside Llewyn Davis

I am not the biggest fan of the Coen brothers as I think many of their films are highly overrated especially No Country for Old Men which I believe it won a best Oscar betting out superior films in There Will Be Blood, and Michael Clayton. The only two truly great Coen brother films I’ve seen are the remake of True Grit, and Inside Llewyn Davis. Llewyn Davis is about the Folk music scene in the early 1960’s following the stuggling Folk singer Llewyn Davis trying to find success in 1961. The acting is top notch, and all the actors performed their own songs.

6. The Place Beyond the Pines

The crime drama about father and sons, and the positive, and the consequences of a fathers actions have on their sons is extremely well written, with good acting, cinematography, and a great score.

5. Man of Steel

I’m sure this will be a debated choice for the number 5 film of the year, but I thought the film was great and one the best comic films I’ve seen. I’m glad Zack Snyder and David S. Goyer did away with the charade that a intelligent report like Lois Lane who deals a lot with Clark Kent could figure out who Superman really is, as well as showing the realist devastating impact beings like Superman and Zod could have on a large city, and displaying why Superman will never intentionally kill agian. Maybe it’s because I was never a fan of the Superman comics, cartoons or the character in general, but I really don’t understand many of the complaints people have of the film. Man of Steel is one of the best films of the year.

4. All is Lost

Legendary actor and director Robert Redford gives one of the best performances of his career in this intimate story of a lone man lost in the Indian Ocean.

3. Mud

I’ve admittedly critical of Matthew McConaughey’s career from the early 2000’s as I’m sure others have as well with his endless terrible romantic comedies, and films like Sahara, and Two for the Money, but since his performance The Lincoln Lawyer, McConaughey has slowly resurrected his career with smart film projects like Killer Joe, The Wolf of Wall Street, and the upcoming Interstellar. McConaughey continues his comeback the beautiful coming of age film where he gives a Oscar caliber performance. You can see my review for more.

2. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

View my review for my review for my complete overview of the film, but Catching Fire was a total step up from the first film, with a riveting and compelling story, great acting by Woody Harrelson, Jena Malone, Elizabeth Banks, Jennifer Lawrence who should have two Oscar nominations this year for best actress, and supporting actress for American Hustle, and Catching Fire brilliantly brings the arena of the second book to life helping to make Catching Fire the second best film of the year.

And the best film of 2013 was…..

1. 12 Years a Slave

12 Years A Slave: Director Steve McQueen brilliantly brings the emotional heart wrenching true story of Solomon Northup a free northern black man in 1841 who ends up being kidnapped, and sold into slavery where here would toil as a slave for 12 years. The films is at times very difficult to watch, but 12 Years A Slave the best film of the year with a great story, some amazing acting by Lupita Nyong’o, Michael Fassbender, and Chiwetel Ejiofor who without question should win the Oscar for Best Actor.

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